The murder rate in Dallas, Texas, has spiked, and as usual, it’s mostly black men killing mostly other blacks. Erik Wilson, a black council member, created a “think before you thug” campaign that he hopes will turn things around.
The campaign involves the police, community leaders, and reformed criminals. The goal is to get more young black men inclined toward crime to consider the consequences before they act:
The campaign is similar in some ways to the pro-Dallas police campaign Operation Blue Shield, which also pushed a community awareness message. But unlike that campaign, “think before you thug” will not be led by business and political elites, Wilson said.
“This is not a top-down effort,” Wilson said. “This is a bottom-up movement.”
The target for the campaign will be high-crime areas in the city. Police have lined up a community fair meant to spread the word.
Such a campaign can’t hurt, but reducing crime rates will take more than a “bottom-up” movement to change generationally entrenched behavior and must begin earlier and reach deeper.
Children born into female-headed households face a higher risk of a variety of social pathology. They grow up with no fathers living in the home. Typically, these fathers also grew up in female-headed households. Breaking the cycle must include marrying before having children. Unfortunately, the social stigma against unwed pregnancy, particularly among blacks, is gone.
And the cycle continues. Perhaps a campaign to stop potential “thugs” will start a larger movement that will have an earlier and deeper impact.